The Philadelphia Eagles have a huge hole to fill at the wide receiver position — that’s not really up for debate. How the team goes about filling this need, however, is a discussion fans have been entrenched in since the middle of last season.
Do we use our first round pick to snag one of this draft class’s best wideouts? Should we sign a veteran WR who can contribute immediately? Personally, I believe Howie Roseman will do both.
This year’s draft class is very deep at wideout, so going after one in the second or third round should still net the team a starting caliber player. Cornerback is also an obvious need for this team and since the draft isn’t quite as deep at CB, addressing that need in the first round just makes more sense.
Reports have suggested that the Eagles aren’t likely to bring back Nelson Agholor and many, including myself, believe Howie will figure out a way to get rid of Alshon Jeffery as well. That leaves the Eagles with DeSean Jackson, J.J. Arcega-Whiteside, Greg Ward and a handful of practice squad guys at wideout.
They need to add at least two wide receivers to that bunch this offseason. Along with a rookie in the draft, expect the team to go after one of the two Pro Bowl wideouts set to hit the open market: Amari Cooper or A.J. Green
There’s a case to be made for either of these guys. Green is a borderline Hall of Famer and will likely have a cheaper price tag because he missed all of last season with injury. Cooper is younger and acquiring him would leave the Dallas Cowboys without their no. 1 receiver.
Howie can’t really go wrong with either of these guys, but if I had my choice, I’d pursue Cooper over Green. Green may have a longer, more appealing track record of success, but as he prepares to enter his 10th NFL season, he’ll be 32-years-old and coming off a year-long absence from football.
That’s not to say he still won’t be an effective weapon, but the Eagles medical staff hasn’t exactly proven they can keep guys on the field, especially with nagging injuries like the one Green sustained over the past year.
Howie emphasized the need to get younger this offseason and signing a 32-year-old wideout would completely throw that statement out the window. At 26-years-old, Cooper is just starting to enter his prime as an NFL wideout and feels like a much better option in this scenario.
He’s coming off back-to-back 1,000 yards seasons with at least seven receiving touchdowns. He helped Dak Prescott put up the best numbers of his career, so just imagine what he could do for Carson Wentz. Not to mention, Doug Pederson’s offense is much more creative than Jason Garrett’s was in Dallas. The sky is the limit if Cooper comes to Philly.
It’ll be interesting to see how Roseman and the rest of the front office attacks this offseason. WR is easily the biggest need on the offensive side of the ball, so don’t be surprised if Cooper ends up joining Philly and suiting up in midnight green next season.